Cameraman based in Edinburgh, employed by ITN, working for ITV's Good Morning Britain covering stories all over the UK and the world. War Zones, World Cups, Royal Tours and many other less exciting assignments, like interviewing current and ex Prime Ministers have kept me busy over the years working in Breakfast Television since GMTV came on the scene back in '93 and regional TV before that. In 2009 I began to record what it is like to work, the often strange and long hours needed to bring the hard news, human interest and fluffy fun to the UK's TV screens in the morning, mostly broadcasting live.

Wednesday, 20 June 2012

Mini Flash Mob and England v Ukraine

Tuesday 19th June 

As expected this morning was indeed busy. 

Edit van and sat' truck in the Broadcast compound
A sticker or two on this Ukrainian TV truck
We had some fans from both England and Ukraine, Henry Winter, a small "Flash Mob" and the man in charge of the English police operation here in Donetsk. One other thing that made this morning more difficult was that it was match day. 

Consequently security had increased. Instead of just wandering to the broadcast compound, where the satellite truck needed to be parked, to get kit and sort out any problems, we had to go through a security gate and take a much longer route to the truck. 

So, it was a relief that there were no glitches that required a mad dash to the truck. The only slight panic was from the sound department in London when a few seconds before our long programme broadcast there was a bit of break up on the radio mic. When the broadcast started the mic behaved perfectly. 

The early guests arrive

Henry Winter and Rav before he goes on air

Rav and Maria with our tiny Flash Mob 

Doing their thing

Between broadcast we did an interview with Assistant Chief Constable Andy Holt which was not live but, recorded to be used by ITN.

ACC Andy Holt does a radio phono after our recorded interview

Someone on the Standard news desk in London must have been watching the programme because one of their photographers working out here on the Euros came over to get some pictures of the fans that we had featured in our broadcasts.

The London Standard's photographer gets his shots

A huge advertising poster now over the building beside the Liverpool hotel.

Not the biggest or tidiest room at the Prague

We had a bit of a break before the crunch game Engald v Ukraine.  Once again we were faced with the logistical dilema of where we could keep the camera so that it would be close enough to easy get after the game for our shots and interviews with the fans leaving the stadium. 

I managed to get our hire car parked quite close to the ground. Rav went off to do some shots of any fans watching the game on TV away from the ground. 

Wayne Rooney nearly gets a second

Andy Cole has a go

There were about ten minutes to go to the end of the game with England leading one nil and the Ukrainians having had a goal disallowed when Tiffany and I left the ground to collect the camera kit. 

We got back as the fans started spilling out. 

We got the piece to camera and vox pops done. It was already quite late because the game had not kicked off until 9:45 local time. Rav had not seen many England fans who had not gone to the game. We met up with him and returned to the hotel. 

The night dragged on until the early hours before we got the full details of what was wanted in the report and what we would be doing in the morning.

Then we recorded the voice over in Rav's room.

It was after 1 am when Tiffany and I retreated to our bedrooms to get a few hours sleep before having to be up at around 5 am in order to get ready to return to the campsite on the outskirts of the city for the morning's broadcasts.

It was then that the folly of having two cups of espresso during the game and a cappuccino back at the hotel whilst we worked out the script became apparent.

There was now a busy party in my head and no amount of counting sheep, concentrating on my eyelids or trying to induce a hypnotic trance could calm it down and get me to sleep.

I probably did get maybe two hours if I was lucky.

There was also now a nightmare logistical scenario for Emily, the sports producer back at Daybreak in London. 

With England winning the group against all expectations the next game would be in Kiev on Sunday.

Back at Daybreak and ITN in London they would have to work out how and where all our broadcasts would come from up until the game.

It looked like we would be on the move again even though Daybreak does not have any programmes on at the weekend.

It was good news for me. I would now be reunited with my hat!

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